Parks pass price to skyrocket

The fee for a lifetime senior pass to National Parks and other federal recreational areas jumps to $80 from $10 on Monday, Aug. 28.

Cost of the National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Senior Pass will increase to be on par with the cost of a regular annual pass (currently $80). A $20 annual pass for senior citizens will be available starting Aug. 28.

Increasing the onetime cost for those 62 and older to the current level of the America the Beautiful annual pass helps ensure our parks and federal recreation areas will remain available for future generations, according a release from the Bureau of Land Management. As stewards, the BLM manages public lands for the benefit of current and future generations, supporting conservation.

The Senior Pass, along with five passes included in the the National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass program, provides access to more than 2,000 recreation sites managed by six federal agencies. The Senior Pass covers all entrance fees and standard amenity (day use) fees and may provide senior discounts for things such as tours or campsites. The pass also waives the entrance fee for traveling companions.

"The lifetime Senior Pass will continue to give seniors access to parks and public lands nationwide, and even at $80, it is an incredible value," said Jamie Connell, state director for BLM Oregon/Washington.

Senior passes purchased before Aug. 28 are still good for life. The current $10 Senior Pass will continue to be sold until the $80 senior pass is implemented on August 28. The pass in available for purchase in Ashland from 8 to 11:30 a.m. and noon to 4:30 p.m. Wednesdays at the Ashland Ranger Station inside Ashland Fire Station No. 2 at 1860 Ashland St.

The pass can be purchased online at

Additional information about the BLM's recreation program is available online at

The phone number for the Ashland Ranger Station is 541-899-3800.

(Aug. 2: Story updated to include information about availability of pass online and correct error saying information about BLM recreation program is available by calling the Forest Service number; that number should only be used for U.S. Forest Service business.)

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